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Genius Mechanic

Genius Mechanic: Chapter 154

Kemu Cave Contaminated Zone(Galactic Promotion Competition)

154. Special Competition System – Maze

Proofread by Cloud Chip Cake

When Ying Chenlin announced the draw result, KID’s conference room fell into a slump.

Even Gu Xiaotian, who had come to report the online store sales, cautiously closed the door and left, not daring to disturb them.

“Hey, it’s not that bad. Although Black Crow is a strong enemy, we still have a chance to win,” Huo Yan said as he noticed Jiang Simiao frantically flipping through the data pad. “There are two teams from the old top-four, but we just need to stay in the top four.”

Upon hearing this, Ji Qingfeng let out a sigh of relief, “Oh right, two groups in the top 16 to top 8. We just need to hold on within the top four.”

Jiang Simiao turned around upon hearing this, “What do you mean two groups?! Do you think this year’s competition format is the same as last year’s?”

The KID members: “?”

Ying Chenlin looked at Jiang Simiao, “Isn’t it? I remember Qiu Jin had two groups last year?”

Jiang Simiao took several data pads from the cabinet next to the conference room, placed them on the table, and said earnestly, “The knockout stage and the top 32 were meant to help us adapt to the new format. But don’t forget, Chairman Li fought for more than a year of suspension for Dawn, not just to give us ample preparation time, but also to allow the League to establish an evaluation team to learn from other galaxies.”

The Dawn Galaxy had been at the bottom for too many years, and finally having a suspension period for a buffer, the Mecha League wouldn’t just let the mecha bases figure things out on their own. The entirety of the Dawn Galaxy Mecha League’s workforce was extremely busy during the suspension period. They didn’t fully halt their preparations, introducing the Assault Medical mecha as a new format, and also making new reforms to the promotion matches.

In the past, team matches used large Competition-level Contaminated Zones, but after the Black Hole incident, the League made new adjustments to the Contaminated Zone format.

The knockout stage and the top 32 were meant to provide all the mecha pilots a buffer period, but this year’s competition would introduce special formats starting from the top 16 matches.

“Chairman Li mobilized all the Contaminated Zone resources. This year’s top 16 to top 8 matches are divided into four groups, using small Contaminated Zones,” Jiang Simiao glanced at everyone, “Would I be this nervous if it were only two groups? Dividing into four groups means there are only two promotion slots per group.”

In the past, the top 16 to top 8 matches were divided into Groups A and B, and they only needed to hold on within the top four to enter the top 8.

Now, with Groups A, B, C, and D, they had to compete with BZZL1 and Black Crow for the top two spots.

Jiang Simiao finished, “Moreover, this time, the Contaminated Zone is the Kemu Cave.”

Upon hearing ‘Kemu Cave’, several KID mecha pilots were bewildered, having never heard of this Contaminated Zone.

However, when Ying Chenlin heard the name, he paused slightly. It was an Individual Soldier Competition-level Contaminated Zone, a small to medium-sized Contaminated Zone. For team matches with numerous mechas, the Dawn Galaxy Mecha League usually provided large Contaminated Zones, reserving small to medium-sized ones for Individual Soldier matches.

“Chenlin should have heard of it, right?” Jiang Simiao sighed, “Kemu Cave was previously an Individual Soldier Competition-level Contaminated Zone.”

“I’ve never been there.”

Ying Chenlin had heard of the Kemu Cave. Although he had never been to this Contaminated Zone, he had heard many Individual Soldiers discuss its difficulties.

No wonder the Mecha League divided the competition into four groups. This meant that there would be only four teams in a Contaminated Zone, necessitating the use of a small one.

The Kemu Cave was among the small to medium-sized Contaminated Zones, known for its extremely complex terrain.

“If even you haven’t been there, many others in team battles certainly haven’t,” Jiang Simiao said. “In the past, we could eliminate potential venues from the official list of Competition-level Contaminated Zones and develop strategies in advance. But this time, the Dawn League’s approach puts an unfamiliar Contaminated Zone in front of all team battle mecha pilots.”

Time passed quickly, and ten days flew by.

All mecha bases had their mechas repaired and ready, just in time for the second round of promotion matches.

Every year, when the Dawn Galaxy Mecha League reaches its promotion match stage, it attracts a large audience. Especially this year, with the new format, the excitement from the knockout stage had only increased the attention on each match.

After the top 32 matches, the top 16 matches followed.

The first group to start competing was Group A.

Group A’s four teams were Black Crow, BZZL1, Giant Bear, and KID.

【This group is the definition of a death group.】

【Two top-four teams, one top-eight team, and one that almost made it to the top eight.】

At the promotion match venue, there were designated resting areas for each mecha base, and the audience seats were packed. The planet Kemu, located in the central region of the Dawn Galaxy and a hub of interstellar travel, was a bustling area.

As a result, the venue for this Competition-level Contaminated Zone was particularly luxurious, with even the signs outside adorned with gold edges and diamonds.

When the KID mecha pilots arrived, they lingered a bit. Lin Yao and Ji Qingfeng insisted on taking photos in front of the venue sign, and then dragged their teammates into the group photo as well.

Ji Qingfeng: “When our base has more money, we should get something like this.”

Lin Yao: “We might as well gild our mechas!”

Jiang Simiao: “…Are you already thinking of ways to squander money before we even have it?”

All the photos were handed over to Shen Xingtang for safekeeping. She picked one that turned out well and had Gu Xiaotian post it on their official blog.

[@KID Mecha Base: Kemu Cave [Heart] [Looking Forward] [Photo]]

Ever since the knockout stage, more and more people had been following KID’s official blog. While fans had long given up expecting frequent updates, they didn’t anticipate that even when KID did post, the photos would have a plain, touristy feel. The six members stood in a formation that looked so much like their initial announcement photo, only with a different background.

【This identical arrangement and the same people—if it weren’t for the gold-plated venue sign, I’d almost think you photoshopped this.】

【Is it just me, or do Sink and Yao look shorter than in the last photo?】

【The short ones look shorter, and the tall ones look taller. This photography skill is something else.】

There was immense interest in this match. When the four participating mecha bases entered the venue, the cheers outside were deafening.

Both at the scene and on StarNet livestream rooms, support signs for each team were everywhere. KID’s fans had just seen the official blog update and quickly arrived at the Kemu Cave venue. Currently, Black Crow’s fans dominated, their unique black and white signs with a black crow logo everywhere. Following them in popularity were BZZL1 and Giant Bear.

【Every time I see Black Crow’s signs, I feel like I’ve entered the wrong venue.】

Commentators in the various livestream rooms were doing pre-match analysis. Their gazes lingered the longest on KID’s signs. Supporting the mecha pilots was normal, but what puzzled them were the specific requests on some signs, like wanting minerals from the planet Kemu or anomalous crystals from the cave’s pollutants. Luckily, the audience was there to watch the match; otherwise, it would seem like a large online store event.

Soon, the mecha pilots entered the venue and proceeded to the preparation area.

KID’s mechanic was still Grandpa Gu. Before entering, Ying Chenlin spoke a few words to Grandpa Gu, and only after being urged by the event staff did he head towards the transition zone.

【KID has a few more members this year.】

【The mechanic for the top 32 matches was Boss Shen, but now it’s the grandpa again.】

【I’m curious how much KID pays the grandpa.】

【Sink only earned 8,000 back when he was a mechanic; it can’t be more than 8,000 star coins…】

【So 8,000 star coins is KID’s standard now?】

Talking about salaries, the moods of Sink’s fans in the livestream room were a bit complex.

They knew KID was poor, but when they delved into KID’s past matches and discovered that Sink’s initial monthly salary as a mechanic at KID was 8,000 star coins, they were shocked. This was Sink, the reigning champion of the Individual Soldier group, and after retiring, he joined KID as a novice mechanic for only 8,000 star coins!?

A dual-skilled talent in mecha piloting and as a mechanic worth only 8,000!? How did KID’s boss even sign that contract!

Some fans refused to believe it, but KID’s job postings were easily accessible. A quick search revealed the job posting from over a year ago. In the end, they could only console themselves that KID must have revised the contract terms for its mechanics.

But still, just 8,000 star coins!? How could KID even manage that!

Thinking of this, fans couldn’t help but look at the boy standing next to KID’s tall mecha pilots in the venue.

He was wearing a well-fitted jacket and a hat, registering to enter the transition zone in front of the staff.

“What did you tell Grandpa Gu?” Huo Yan asked as he saw Ying Chenlin rushing over.

Ying Chenlin said it was nothing, but his gaze paused slightly as he looked at the various transition coordinates listed in the zone. He had a feeling that something had been off about this match from the moment they entered the venue.

As he observed, the mecha pilots of the four registered teams were also looking up at the ceiling.

Huo Yan said, “Have you noticed something off? This Competition Zone feels different from the ones we’ve played in before.”

You Su stood in front of the transition zone and noticed Black Crow’s team in their black uniforms.

The lead mecha pilot was talking to the staff, seemingly requesting another set of documents about the Kemu Cave. “It seems a lot of people have noticed something’s off.”

Seeing this, Huo Yan also went over to get detailed information from the staff.

Ji Qingfeng said, “Wasn’t it said that the top 16 might feature a highly difficult competition?”

Lin Yao replied, “But no matter how the competition changes, the Contaminated Zone is still the same Contaminated Zone.”

Lu Xi looked into the distance and noticed that there seemed to be more staff than usual. “Are those rescue team mecha pilots over there? It looks like there are more of them too.”

Ji Qingfeng: “…?”

Ying Chenlin’s observations didn’t stop until he entered the cockpit. Even then, he was reading the environmental data on Kemu Cave that Huo Yan had brought back.

Upon closer inspection, he suddenly realized that the on-site information provided for the Kemu Cave Contaminated Zone was much more detailed than what they had gathered online.

For all mecha pilots, Kemu Cave was a completely unfamiliar Contaminated Zone. Even though there were video materials of Individual Soldier operations available online, these were only references. The Contaminated Zone’s environment changes every year due to the previous competitions. These videos only had a 60% value as references; the rest depended entirely on the mecha pilots’ own exploration once they entered the zone.

While the teams hesitated in the transition zone, other mecha bases outside the venue also focused on Kemu Cave.

With the changes in Dawn’s new season’s format and the modifications to the group competition’s rules, what was the big reveal the Mecha Alliance had been preparing?

Commentators in the various livestream rooms began their introductions. “Ladies and gentlemen, the match in the Kemu Cave Contaminated Zone is about to start.”

As the preparatory sounds for the match began, all the livestreams displayed detailed information on the Kemu Cave Contaminated Zone.

Kemu Cave was located in an underground Contaminated Zone, covered by a special magnetic field. It was primarily situated on the planet Kemu in the central region of the Dawn Galaxy. The planet Kemu was perpetually enveloped in chaotic magnetic interference, making it a prime location for experimental testing for numerous institutions and enterprises within the Dawn Galaxy due to the unique nature of its magnetic field. Consequently, many anti-interference and magnetic field devices in the Dawn Galaxy had been tested through Kemu’s facilities.

The surface environment of the planet was treacherous, yet beneath the rocky mineral surface lay a unique underworld— Kemu Cave.

This cave was covered with rare and sturdy minerals found within the Star Alliance, forming a wide and expansive subterranean world. This unique environment and terrain had attracted the attention of many star systems, making it a hotbed for technological research within the Dawn Galaxy. As a result, numerous human research stations had been established in Kemu’s underground.

The unique environment could withstand the vibrations and destruction caused by mecha battles. To regularly eliminate pollutants from the underground, the Dawn Alliance has designated this area as one of the Contaminated Zones requiring special treatment.

The pollution level in this zone fluctuates between 4000 and 5500, falling within the range of a Level 3-4 marginal Contaminated Zone, with its common pollutants starting at A-Class.

For the Mecha Team League, Kemu Cave was an entirely unfamiliar Contaminated Zone. As the commentators finished introducing the main overview of Kemu Cave, the livestream immediately transitioned into the interior of the Kemu Cave Contaminated Zone, where all viewers were greeted with a deep underground world.

Various substances had naturally accumulated on the cave ceiling, forming peculiar and unique stalactites and stalagmites. The width of the cave from the ceiling to the bottom could reach up to thousands of meters, and its vast expanse could easily accommodate mechas freely maneuvering within.

Just as the audience marveled at the unique terrain of this Contaminated Zone, the appearance of mechas within the zone suddenly stunned everyone!

The atmosphere among the commentators was abruptly interrupted halfway through: “—What is this!?”

Outside the venue, Jiang Simiao, who had just sat down to rest, almost choked on his water. The next moment, he spurted it all out: “What is the Alliance doing!?”

[Welcome to the Kemu Cave Contaminated Zone, Group Stage [16-8] Group A, Mecha Teams Loaded: 4/4, Mechas Loaded: 24/24] [The mode of this match is [Maze Survival (Race)], the rulebook has been synchronized to the match system, please read it carefully.]

When the field of view in front of Ying Chenlin changed, all he could see was complete darkness, accompanied by the sound of dripping water.

He turned on the mecha’s searchlight, but the light seemed to be completely engulfed by darkness, only revealing the distant black water and the grotesque cave walls.

Wide, silent, and seemingly bottomless.

Most importantly, there were no mechas in sight within his field of view.

He was alone, without any teammates.

The communication channel buzzed, and his teammates’ voices appeared on the channel.

“Hello? Hello?” Ji Qingfeng: “What the f*ck is this pitch-black place? Does Kemu Cave have such a place ah?”

Lin Yao bumped into the cave wall after just a few steps, bewildered: “Huh? Where are you guys ah??”


Well this sounds interesting!

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1 month ago

Oooh how interesting, KID might actually be best off out of the four teams in this situation since they regularly split up anyway 🤔 Course I could be wrong 🤷

Also what’s up with this race format? Do all six mechas have to make it to the end of the maze for it to count? I’m interested to see how this goes!

Thank you for the update!

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